Carter describes Christmas celebrations in North Carolina in the decades before the American Revolution. Christmas Day was considered a holy day, but the Christmas season, which ran from December 16 to January 6, was a time for social activities. The emphasis was on hunting, horse racing, games, courting, Christmas balls, family gatherings, and caroling. It was a season for leisure. Wassailing and burning the Yule log were traditions that early settlers brought from England, and mistletoe would have been one of the more popular decorations.